End of year sales are tempting even after maxing out the credit card with all the essentials for Christmas and soon it will be time to supply the children with all those return to school necessities.
"Many will be avoiding checking out the bank balance over the next couple of months when in reality this is the time for a new resolve and a time to design a budget you can live with," said Susan Allen of Money Skills Centre for Learning, a Sydney-based financial and life skills training organisation.
"As a life coach with five years' experience working on financial literacy programs, so many people continue to tell me, ‘I don’t understand the concept of a budget, I don’t know how to start one and I could never stick to it anyway’. The belief being that it will only show how much money they don’t have, which is a total misconception.
"The New Year is the time to develop new positive habits and a designer budget, one the individual will be comfortable with, one that is all about the most important person in your life, you," says Ms Allen.
If spending habits in the past have not moved you closer to your goals, then it is definitely time to change them. Your designer budget will show you where your money comes from and where it has been going to; it will indicate what you have been doing well and what you have done wrong allowing the opportunity to ‘fix things’. This will guide you to improve on the great habits and eliminate those habits which have a negative effect.
A designer budget is just like a car seat belt, it is there to prevent and protect against foreseeable and unexpected crisis. We value our life and would never consider starting the car before the seat belt is on so why start 2010 without a money plan for your life?
Investing a little time and effort in yourself and confronting any bad spending habits is the best starting point, remember, think before you spend, spend less and start to save more.
Now is the time to map out the future and how to achieve personal goals, realistically. Set a simple goal, something which will give you pleasure, motivate you , keep you on track when tempted to fall back into old habits, perhaps changing the car next year, a holiday or a deposit for your first home?
"Money and life skills are inseparable, they allow us to live life to the fullest and be successful, and it is the belief which drives MSCL," said Ms Allen. "We have created a new website which includes money and time saving hints and tips. If anyone has a tip they would like to share please forward to us at [email protected]/."
Some tips for those who felt it has been the season to be tempted:
- Be realistic about what you can afford
- Pay in cash when possible and avoid loading the credit card
- Pay back interest free credit within the time limit
- Shop around, compare products and terms
- Always read the fine print terms and conditions.
Money Skills Centre for Learning P/L ( MSCL )
Money Skills Centre for Learning provides the answers for people in transition by providing training and coaching for groups and individuals who are experiencing change.
MSCL provides services for employment agencies and innovative business, real estate agencies and financial planners to offer 'point of difference'opportunities for their clients.
The key to handle financial stress quickly and successfully. MSCL offers the opportunity to improve financial and life skills.
Life is for living, successfully.